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Jairus Byrd planning to skip Buffalo Bills mandatory OTA

July 15 remains the hard deadline for the Bills and their best defender to agree to a long-term contract.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Spor

Buffalo Bills free safety Jairus Byrd still doesn't have a long-term contract in place, and he'll use that as his reasoning for missing the start of mandatory OTAs tomorrow, according to Ian Rapoport of

This news isn't remotely surprising, as this minicamp is Byrd's last bit of leverage before a July 15 deadline for the two sides to agree to a long-term deal. If July 15 comes and goes without a contract, Byrd will only be able to sign a one-year deal with the club, and he'll have the option of abstaining from joining the team until as late as November 12.

Byrd can't be fined for his absence, as he's currently not under contract (he hasn't signed the franchise tender the team put on him in early March). His continued absence will undoubtedly be a disappointment for all parties involved, but again: July 15 is the date to really worry about.